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Sustainable Ambitions: SBE commitment to environmental consciousness and CO₂ reduction

14/03/2024
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At SBE, we are committed to one of the most pressing issues in today’s society, a topic that concerns and affects each of us: the environment and sustainability. Every year, we evaluate our efforts for the climate, specifically focusing on reducing our CO2 emissions. We do this through the CO2 Performance Ladder, for which we are currently at level three. With our CO2 management system, we track our emissions and implement various measures to achieve our reduction goals.

Energy consumption

In 2023, 458 solar panels were installed on the roofs of our headquarters in Sint-Niklaas. Figures regarding electricity consumption in 2023 clearly demonstrate the effectiveness of this installation. Whereas an annual increase in total consumption had been observed since 2020, this trend was reversed last year thanks to the solar panels’ output. A total of approximately 136,000 kWh was generated, of which 51,000 kWh (about 38%) was consumed directly. The remaining 62% was injected into the grid, resulting in a significant discount on our final bill. In addition to solar panel generation, 69,000 kWh of electricity was purchased.

In 2023, total consumption was reduced by 15,000 kWh compared to 2022, despite the increased use of electric vehicle charging stations.

However, we anticipate an increase in electricity consumption for the coming year due to further expansion of the charging infrastructure and the continued electrification of our fleet. Consequently, we aim to maximize the direct usage of our generated solar energy by charging electric vehicles at the office.

Footprint 2023

Each year, we also calculate our CO2 footprint to closely monitor the evolution of our emissions. The emissions from electricity consumption in 2023 will be reflected in the results of the 2023 footprint. The results of the 2023 footprint will be announced later this year. From this, it will be evident whether we have achieved our targets for scope 1, 2, and 3, namely a reduction of 10% compared to the previous year.

Here is the analysis of our latest footprint (2022).

Measures

We are implementing various measures to achieve our defined reduction targets.

  • Purchasing printers with high energy efficiency (already implemented in February)
  • Expansion from 6 to 18 charging points for electric vehicles
  • 25% of the charging points operate grid-aware (reduced capacity during peak hours)
  • 15% of the fleet consists of electric vehicles
  • Option for employees with a company car lease to exchange their car for a mobility budget
  • Investment of 10-20% of the research and innovation budget in topics that can help reduce CO2 emissions
  • Training for 25-75% of our engineers/designers/project leaders with a focus on the importance, materiality, and design methods of CO2 reduction
  • Incorporating CO2 reduction as a fixed agenda item in periodic meetings with all major clients

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